Anyone who’s studied SEO for a while can tell you that a well-written, search optimized blog can have huge benefits for you or your company when it comes to marketing online – but what about writing content for other individuals’ and companies’ blogs?
This can also be a good way to hugely increase your traffic and further build your online brand. It’s called guest posting, and it’s been relevant to SEO for a while, but looks to become hugely important in 2017.
How does this help your online presence? There are quite a few ways:
- Your name and your company name are attached to the blog posts you write for others – meaning that searches for those names can turn up these well-written, informative blog posts and make your brand look good.
- You can backlink to your main site (and possibly your social media pages, Yelp page, or other external properties related to your brand as well) from the guest post – either in the byline or in the text of the article. These backlinks, especially if they come from popular, reputable blogs, are hugely effective in boosting your SEO. Many SEO gurus say (and there is significant evidence from Google supporting them) that links from other sites are the single biggest factor in determining your SERP ranking.
- Writing guest posts for others’ blogs can provide networking opportunities that often lead to business partnerships, employment, and other tangible benefits.
If you’re sold on the benefits of guest posting now, and you think you have the writing skill and industry expertise to do it, here’s how to get started:
Put yourself in contact with bloggers in need of guest posts. Many popular blogs have a submission process for guest posts that’s not unlike submitting queries or finished articles to a newspaper or magazine – and even if they don’t, you can always contact the blogger directly.
You can also consider using services like myblogguest.com, which directly links bloggers in need of guest post with writers who can provide those posts for them. This approach works best if you have quantifiable expertise in particular fields.
In addition, the opposite approach – having guest posters write for your blog – can also be beneficial to your online brand. How does this work?
Every time a guest poster writes an article for you, she or he provides a unique perspective that you might not get if you write all the posts alone or use only staff writers. This can make your site look more varied and interesting both to site visitors and to Google’s spiders – for example, the guest poster might use a lot of search terms that you hadn’t thought of yet!
This content is free, which means that you can update your blog more frequently without spending any extra money. It also means that you’ll have more free time to work on other aspects of the company, whether marketing-related or not.
Last but not least, those potential networking relationships described above run both ways – meaning you might find an expert to review your product or a great new employee through being open to guest posts.
Many small business think they can get away with not using social media to promote themselves, but this is not the case – just as many business owners think SEO less effective than “traditional” marketing methods such as TV, radio, or newspaper advertisements, though this is not true.
The fact is that even if you have great SEO, you might not be making the biggest possible impact if you’re not utilizing social media to its fullest potential. Even if the rest of your SEO or SEM package is great, you might not be getting all the customers you possibly could if you combined SEO/SEM with a strong social media presence – because a social media presence compliments SEO.
“How does social media help my SEO?” you might ask. Well, here are the answers.
A strong social media presence can help your SEO by providing valuable backlinks (or “external links”) to your company’s main site. How does this work? It’s simple.
You’ll link your profiles on social media outlets such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Google Plus to your company website directly. This can be easily done during the initial setup of your accounts on these sites.
That provides your main site with a few backlinks and a little more legitimacy. But you can really put your SEO through the roof with the following technique:
Every single time you post new content on your main site (which you should do frequently, perhaps through a blog), share that fresh content (or an excerpt from it) on social media with a link to your main site. This will boost your SERP rankings not only the first time it is posted, but even more with each share, forward, etc.
Why does this happen? I’ll make it simple for you – one of the primary ways Google and other major search engines determine what appears in their SERPs at all and where these things appear in their SERPs is backlinks or external links.
Every time another site links to your site, that’s a backlink or external link. And each and every one of these is considered a sort of “vote” for you by that other site – which makes you appear more legitimate, relevant, and interesting to Google and its competitors in the search engine industry.
Backlinks (or external links) are considered the single most important factor determining where your site lands on a SERP by many prominent SEO experts – and that means that the more backlinks you have to your site, the more customers you’ll get on autopilot.
If you’re interested in creating a major social media presence for your business, please check out major social media outlets like Facebook, Google Plus, Twitter, and Instagram. A presence on any of these sites will almost certainly boost your SEO – and will help you in other ways as well, which I’ll be sure to document for you in a future post.
With a strong SEO presence, you’re sure to dominate at SEO – and in the hearts and minds of potential customers everywhere.
The end of a year is usually the time when SEO professionals like our team here at SERP Ability take a breather and look at what has worked in the past year and what hasn’t, as well as where new trends in the complex world of SEO are pointing. Why? To see what will work best in the next year, of course!
Although SEO is constantly changing, it’s often at the beginning of a new year that the biggest changes become apparent. Here are three of the top methods we’ve learned will still work in 2017 from studying trends and looking back on our own activities in 2016.
1. Link Building
Link building is probably the most controversial entry on this list, because Google has changed its policy on the importance of links every time it has released a major algorithm update.
The fact is, though, that their deepest, most fundamental stance on links hasn’t changed. Quality links will always boost your site’s traffic and SERP standing. What has changed over the years is how much low-quality or spam links can help – and those aren’t the type of links real SEO professionals use anymore anyway.
Quality links from established, authoritative sites that are relevant to yours are one of the single most important factors in determining where your site lands on a SERP.
2. Quality Content
Yes, it’s easy to keyword-stuff and use other gray hat, black hat, or spamming techniques to get to the top – but no site without quality content ever stays there. While it’s true that “no one stays at the top forever,” you’ll be there a great deal longer if you prioritize well-written, meaningful, and relevant content, no matter what field you’re in.
With Google’s algorithm becoming more advanced and focused every single day, and the rise in importance of semantic search, the quality and relevance of your content are going to be more important than ever when it comes to your SERP standings.
Don’t forget that quality content is also historically proven to be the best way to get customers to stick around after they’ve clicked on your site.
3. Keywords, keywords, keywords.
This is another one that might be controversial, but shouldn’t be.
It seems that every new year some SEO “guru” predicts “20XX is the YEAR THE KEYWORD DIES!” or something just as dramatic.
However, the importance of keywords to Google and other search engines has never changed. Remember the early AOL days? Keywords were important then, and they’re important now. The only things that have changed are how much better the search engines have gotten to understand keywords in context.
This means that keyword stuffing probably isn’t a viable option anymore, or at least won’t be for long. However, keywords still have a huge role as part of a site’s high quality content – and the rise of semantic search may make them more important than ever, even as it totally changes the way search engine algorithms look at them.